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Summary:

Foursquare is no longer a US phenomenon – the company is beginning to see some rapid growth in highly mobile societies and the newest one to join the party is Brazil which like Indonesia represents future growth for services like Foursquare. Brazil is already hot for Foursquare.

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Foursquare is no longer a U.S. phenomenon. The New York City-based company is beginning to see some rapid growth in highly mobile societies. The newest one to join the party is Brazil, which has started to take off in the past few weeks, according to Co-Founder and CEO Dennis Crowley.

Crowley explained that nearly 50 percent of the Foursquare usage (and users) are in non-U.S. markets, with the bulk of activity coming from Europe as a region and Japan as a country. Many of these folks were using BlackBerry devices, which according to Crowley, accounts for almost 20 percent of Foursquare usage. Lately, the growth for the service has taken off in new markets such as Indonesia and Brazil.

“This growth (in Brazil) is organic,” Crowley says. The number of local Brazilian establishments that encourage checking-in on Foursquare has amazed him. This, in turn, has prompted mobile carriers to reach out to Foursquare, which has established a localized website for Brazil.

Getting an early toehold in one of the fastest growing mobile economies is a good thing for the overall ambitions of the company, which recently crossed the 10-million member mark and grabbed $50 million in new investment for its future growth. According to the Brazilian telecom regulator, Anatel, there were 213 million mobile phone subscriptions at the end of April 2011, of which 82.1 percent were prepaid handsets and 17.9 percent were post-paid mobiles.

From the archives, my previous posts that outline my thinking on Foursquare:

  1. I was in Brazil a few months ago and saw pretty good Foursquare usage for sure. Not nearly as big as Twitter, which is super super huge, nor as big as Facebook, which is coming on fast, nor as Orkut which remains the 2nd largest behind Twitter I believe but is pulling a MySpace. I really wish I could have checked in to more places in Brazil myself but leaky and expensive international data meant that I ran up a $1000 bill on my first day there just because my phone was on in between check-ins :( I was able to cut that back down to $200 but what I really would love is off-line storage of venues in a city, manual search, then pushing check-ins when on wifi.

    Brazil is awesome though, with huge social media and mobile phone penetration. Foursquare should be able to do some really big things there, as Twitter already has.

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  2. “According to the Brazilian telecom regulator, Anatel, there were 213 mobile phone subscriptions at the end of April 2011, ”

    Is this typo ?

    213 Subscription only… thats a bit confusing

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    1. 213 Millions.
      The population of Brazil is ~190MM.
      Yes, we have more cellphones than people! :)

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      1. That is correct. More than one phone subscription is a norm.

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    2. For sure it means 213 million. As a brazilian, that sounds about right, although I don’t have the official numbers here.

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  3. The website linked in the post as “Foursquare Brazil” is not a official site, its a fan made blog.

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    1. Wow… it looks exactly like FSQ website.

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      1. That’s their intention, to look official lol

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  4. I think he meant 213 million. Look at this article in portuguese: http://www.monitormercantil.com.br/mostranoticia.php?id=95360

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    1. Thanks Mohajar. I must have deleted the millions. Sorry about that guys.

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  5. In many countries in LATAM the same user has more than one handset for many reasons wich in most cases are different prepaid plans and data options. There also some true jokes in there…….. ;-)

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  6. Just to correct a detail: There were 213 million mobile phone subscriptions at the end of April 2011 in Brazil.

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  7. Missing is the Foursquare pay more attention to Brazil and create badges and local campaigns. We have all the structure and people willing to make the Foursquare expand more and more.

    ps: Yes, there are people here who have more than one cell. And there are companies that give a corporate cell.

    (my english is not very good, but I think I said what I wanted)

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  8. So I had heard that in Brazil phone (and particularly smartphone) penetration is much lower than places like China & India because of the ridiculously high data rates. From this piece Om, it would seem that I am misinformed (perhaps by a large PC vendor with a vested interest).

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  9. Que venha o Foursquare!

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